‘Muted Screams’ are an Alternative/Rock band based in Quebec City, Canada. Originally formed in Ste-Marie de Beauce back in 2007 by Melanie Gagne, Lead Vocalist & Guitarist this is a band that is already making an impact on the Canadian music scene. The band released their first demo back in 2008 and has since become one of the most active bands in the Quebec City area. The bands current line up includes Charles-Alexandre Beaudoin on Guitar, Matt Boulanger on Bass and L-P La Roche on Drums.
‘What Are You Made Of?’ begins rather strangely with a track titled ‘The End’. Commencing with a crescendo of instrumentals this is a great start to the album immediately grabbing your attention and laying the foundation for what is to come. Melanie really brings the lyrics to life with vocals that are at times quite soft in tone yet never lacking confidence. My first impression was that this band sound a fair bit like Paramore did in the early days; I soon dismissed this as being due to a slight similarity in vocal tone as there are clearly other influences present. This is a band that has taken inspiration from the likes of Thrice, Coheed and Cambria and the Deftones and combined it with the courage to explore any soundscape they come across to create their own musical identity.
The second song ‘Deadwood’ is a track that combines fast paced drumming and guitars with catchy lyrics to great effect. By comparison ‘Speak’ is a slow haunting melody. If it was not clear already this is an album containing plenty of diversity among the nine tracks present. The album continues in this fashion with each song offering something a little different to the listener, whether it’s a track containing loud powerful instrumentals backed up by vocals laced with defiance such as ‘Tonight’, or a slower tune where Melanie’s lyrics are the standout feature carrying messages that anyone can relate to such as ‘Soldier’ each of the nine songs included on ‘What Are You Made Of?’ is a gem in its own way. It is apparent that this album was anything but rushed, and that a lot of thought has gone into the selection process of which songs to include and where.
I feel that ‘Broken Wheel’ deserves special mention. This was the bands first single and upon release in 2011 was played on high rotation among the Rock/Alternative radio stations in Quebec. A powerful song about heartbreak, this is a great example of what ‘Muted Screams’ are capable of. The lyrics are well written and Melanie delivers them with perfect clarity, the guitars build from a slow start into a steady rhythm with plenty of volume, and there is also a standout solo performed by Charles.
Guitarist Charles also had another role to play in the creation of this album as producer alongside long-time friend of the band Jerome Larochelle who did the mixing for the tracks. This D.I.Y approach to production has really paid off! The top quality proves that this is an album that was only ever going to be released once everyone involved in its creation was satisfied. Overall I would say that this is one of the best Alternative/Rock bands that I have ever heard and ‘What Are You Made Of?’ is certainly not one to be missed by fans of the genre.
1. The End
5. Nobody Wants
6. Strong Enough
8. Broken Wheel
9. What Are You Made Of?
Overall I would say that this is one of the best Alternative/Rock bands that I have ever heard and ‘What Are You Made Of?’ is certainly not one to be missed by fans of the genre.